Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times | Terms of Service | Privacy Policy

Karen S. Kim Gincarlo Espinoza is still...

Karen S. Kim

Gincarlo Espinoza is still about $200 shy of being able to afford

the puppy he’s wanted for the past three years.

He’d be $50 closer to his goal if he hadn’t given away his puppy


savings a year ago to the Sept. 11 Fund sponsored by the United Way.

A year later and still puppy-less, Gincarlo said he sometimes regrets

his act of charity. Why?

“Because I was trying to save up for the puppy and I gave my money


away,” Gincarlo said Monday. “I don’t really remember what made me do


Gincarlo, 10, had joined his classmates at Glendale Adventist

Elementary last year in raising $1,180 for the families of those

killed during the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. His act of charity

profiled in the News-Press prompted one local couple to anonymously

donate a 30-pound jar of pennies and other coins, four $1 bills and a

wristwatch to Gincarlo’s puppy fund.


The fifth-grader has been adding to the jar ever since. To date,

he has saved about $300, his mother Tina said.

“He’s worked very hard to save up the money,” she said. “He

doesn’t spend it on anything else.”

In addition to a monthly allowance of $10, Gincarlo raises funds

through entrepreneurships. He even made $40 offering carwashes

outside his house to passing drivers.

“You have to work for it,” Gincarlo said. “And you have to open up


a business or something like that.”

Gincarlo said his goal is to save about $500 for a puppy by

Christmas. If there’s any money left over, he’d like to buy a Sony

PlayStation 2, he said.

But his days of charitable living aren’t over, according to his

mother. When he sees someone in need, he still reaches out a helping


“He doesn’t spend the money he’s saved, only when I have money

problems and have to have money, he lets me borrow some,” she said.

“He’s still pretty giving.”